A recurrent theme in the Sociology of Disasters literature is the vital importance of locality-based, community-level, grassroots approaches to disaster preparedness that allow for direct citizen participation. Two of your Week 3 readings describe examples of such organization. The first of these involves “disaster town watching,” an approach that was developed in Japan in the 1970s and has since been used successfully in numerous societies and situations (Ogawa, Fernandez, & Yoshimura, 2005, p.6). The second involves the use of school teachers for educating youth to disaster risks and responses in the country of Nepal (Shiwaku, Shaw, Kandel, Shrestha, & Dixit, 2006). In this assignment I want you to help me build my literature base in this topical area by identifying additional academic literature describing and analyzing cases of grassroots, locality-based disaster preparation involving citizens at the community level.
There are numerous ways to approach the task. For example, the case described in the literature you identify can involve a community that has already been organized, but whose system effectiveness has not yet been tested by an actual disaster event. In such a case I would ask you to evaluate as best you can from the literature you find, the potential of the approach to reduce risk and vulnerability, to improve responsiveness, or increase resilience. Alternatively, the case described in the literature you identify can involve a community-based system that has already been tested by a disaster event. In such a case, you would need to assess both the form of organization and its effectiveness.
Either way, the end products must be: 1) the identification of one or more articles describing and analyzing a case of grassroots, community-based, local-level, citizen-involved disaster preparedness published in an academic journal or as a chapter of a book. If it provides you with sufficient information, one article will be enough; 2) an essay summarizing the case as presented in the literature you have identified.
While the Internet may be a good place to start your literature search, I strongly recommend that you use this opportunity to use UMUC’s excellent on-line library services, including Document Express if necessary. Furthermore, please take advantage of this moment to understand the APA citation style so that you can correctly use it in your term paper. The style is well described at the following website (http://www.lib.monash.edu.au/tutorials/citing/apa.html).

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